Archive for the ‘100 Theme Challenge’ Category

25. Breaking Away

October 19, 2008

Julia held onto Riley’s index finger gently, her grip so loose, threatening to leave them separated.

“You can go Riley. I can’t make you be with me.”

Julia wondered why this felt so easy to say, when it felt like her organs were searing apart.

“Leave, but know, without you-”

And she stopped because maybe it was too corny and maybe Riley deserved something original. But Julia just wasn’t that- she liked to say words from songs because she wasn’t as articulate as the poets and authors Riley revered. So she turned to the ones who knew how to speak. Riley’s eyes pleaded too, pleaded for a concrete end because she needed to end this and be able to have a new beginning guiltlessly.

“I’ll be miserable at best.”

Julia let go of Riley’s finger, of every little piece she still had of Riley, and left it there.

Advertisements

93. Simplicity

October 18, 2008

Julia showed up to school three days and four hours late during lunch break.

When she crossed the quad the place was bustling in full bloom. The line at the school store wasn’t too long so she decided to get a Hershey’s bar. While waiting she leaned against the dirty brick wall and grazed her eyes over the crowd of students.

Somewhere in the middle of the quad she spotted Trevor and Riley. She saw his beautifully blissful smile as the two spoke to each other. Julia wanted to hate him but every time she tried to, it only made her hate herself. She saw Riley too and Julia’s utter confidence that Riley loved Julia wholly was compromised.

After a moment, Trevor stood and gave Riley a sweet, innocent kiss before walking away. Julia continued to watch the girl, knowing that’s all she’d be able to do now.

And when Riley’s head turned to hers, like Julia’s heart was a drum, beating for attention, Julia should have turned away. But she couldn’t, didn’t even want to.

From here Julia saw Riley’s eyes were just as soft and kind as she remembered them.

Riley lifted her arm, her motions stuttering in uncertainty, in a feeble wave of ‘hi’.

Julia smiled and did the same. She would just have to remind herself this was better than nothing.

59. Challenged

October 18, 2008

Julia had never been this close to Trevor before. So close she could almost see his anger become physical foam at the corners of his mouth.

“You had your chance Julia and you fucked it up. Stay the fuck away from us.”

“Then tell your girlfriend to stop stalking me.”

She said girlfriend in the most condescending tone, a mockery of what he had worked so hard for.

“Stop giving her reasons to! Homework, Julia? Really? Is that the best thing you could come up with?”

Julia shrunk back slightly because it did seem kind of desperate. But she blamed her irrationality on the overdose of chocolate she had that morning.

“Stop deluding yourself Trevor. We’ve been through this before.”

Trevor could feel his rage turning him into a monster. Making him think thoughts only the sinister believed in. However, at that moment he pushed his morals aside and let his ego devour him for once. He had taken Julia’s shit for a major portion of his life and all the times he had turned the other cheek were catching up to him and building. Her stare begged for a challenge and he was ready to punish and destroy.

36. Dreamer

October 17, 2008

With the nightstand littered with multicolored pills and orange prescription bottles, Julia knew Riley was falling apart. Riley was probably turning to her medication for everything that bothered her. Julia didn’t judge because she’d been there. And she knew that it wasn’t something you could explain and advise someone on; it was something you had to figure out on your own.

She found little solace in the fact that at least with everything Riley was throwing into her body, it would probably completely knock her out cold.

What Julia didn’t know though, was that Riley hated it. Hated not being able to have the nightmares that once plagued her. Because she was slowly starting to forget that it was only in her mind-in those dreams and nightmares-that alternate realities existed.

And any alternate reality was better than this one.

60. Exhaustion

October 17, 2008

Julia dug her hand into her hair and propped her head up in an effort to stay awake. She’d just been kicked out of Riley’s house (on the one damn occasion she could convince Riley to let her stay the night her father had come home). Julia explicitly explained to the guy the reason she was only in a bra and underwear laying on top of a fully clothed Riley because it was too damn hot in her room and Riley was much more comfortable than the practically hardwood mattress she slept on.

She didn’t feel like going home so she stopped by the diner instead and to her surprise found Nathan at the booth in the back corner.

“Did your midnight cravings hit?” she asked, sliding in the booth opposite him and picking up a menu.

“It’s 4 AM.”

“Tom-a-toes, to-mah-toes.”

She threw the menu down, everything suddenly seeming unappetizing.

“This relationship shit is exhausting.”

Nathan laughed as he looked at his grumpy ex.

“You mean being monogamous?”

“I mean everything.”

Nathan kept in his sigh but refused to look at the girl.

“But it’s nice right?”

Julia observed his avoiding eyes.

“Whatever,” she said.

It’s not like he would ever know she was lying.

76. Summer Haze

October 16, 2008

The air is so thick she has to breathe through her mouth to fill her lungs. Her bangs feel grimy, sticking to her sweat licked forehead.

She walks to the kitchen for hydration, each movement of her limbs releasing another bead of sweat from her skin.

The cool refrigerator provides some relief and takes her mind off the humidity she must face once she closes the doors. When she does and turns to press her back into the frig, she closes her eyes.

Outside, Julia watches Riley secretly with a cigarette dangling from her mouth. She thinks it stupid how Trevor’s parents never invested in blinds. Any perv can just walk up and see the entire kitchen. But that doesn’t matter today, not when at a certain angle (if Julia tilts her head just a little to the left) Riley looks like she’s enjoying something other than the cool of the refrigerator.

Taking a long drag, she lets out a curious ‘hmph’ at her own thoughts.

And attributes them to brain altering effects of the summer heat.

2. Complicated

October 15, 2008

Heather lets out a puff of smoke after keeping it deep in her lungs long enough for them to ache in protest. The affect is so worthwhile the momentary pain.

Riley stares at the poster on Heather’s wall of James Dean and Natalie Wood and gets an urge to re-watch Rebel Without a Cause. She knows she shouldn’t but she likes to think of Julia as a twisted Jim Stark, deeply wishing Julia was as simple as a misunderstood teenager of the 1950s.

“I don’t understand why you can’t just leave,” Heather says after a long silence, her voice distorted after taking another hit.

Riley sighed quietly, her eyes trailing off Dean’s meaningful yet hollow gaze.

She didn’t know why either.

1.Introduction

October 15, 2008

She nibbles on her sandwich, not particularly hungry but she’s so nervous she needs to do something with her hands. She takes out a baby carrot from her zip lock bag and nibbles on that as well.

The branches of a deciduous tree bellow and strain above her as the wind shakes a few weak leaves astray. She watches the movement; mesmerized at how such a powerful mass can be swayed by something she can’t even see.

So mesmerized that she doesn’t see the boy who stands next to her.

“Lose a kite or something?”

She’s spooked by this sudden invasion but his smile is disarming.

“No, I was just…” She doesn’t explain, because being mesmerized by trees would most likely categorize her as a weirdo at her new school. The boy doesn’t look like he needs any more words anyways.

“I’m Trevor,” he says with that ceaseless smile and an extended hand.

She nods and slips her small hand into his gentle palm, “Riley.”